Inspirations For Grilling

By Cotton Clark

Inspirations. We all have them. I was inspired to begin cooking thanks to numerous influences in my life dating all the way back to my childhood memories of my grandmother, in Odessa, cooking for my cowboy grandfather. She prepared the most delicious homemade yeast rolls.

In high school, my family moved to San Antonio, where I met and was inspired by none other than Lucas Postolos, famed owner and general manager of the San Francisco Steakhouse. I began working there as a busboy, eventually graduating to preparing tableside famous New Orleans classic flaming desserts like Crepes Suzette, Strawberries Flambé, Bananas Foster, and Cherries Jubilee. Yes, we prepared them right in front of the customer back then, and it was quite the show… replete with a few unexpected pyrotechnic moments. That’s what happens when you use 151-proof rum to light the dessert! Alas, restaurants hide their preparation in the kitchen nowadays! (As for me…I abide by a “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy myself!)

Later on down the road, my in-laws bestowed upon me an old, tired and worn-out Arkla gas grill, and then, for Father’s Day one year, my then young sons gave me my current Weber Genesis. That was nearly 15 years ago and it’s still cooking like a champ!

Today I also own a ceramic cooker and I find sources of inspirations all around. BuzzFeed’s 45-second “Tasty… Oh YES!” videos have become one of my favorites. Although the video chefs usually prepare their goodies in the oven, anything done in an oven can be prepared in a ceramic cooker like the Big Green Egg. Can you say, HELLO?!

Other YouTube and blogging favorites of mine include Chef John at Food Wishes, America’s Test Kitchens, Stoked on Smoke, Tessa Arias at Handle the Heat, Kaleb Wyse at The Gray Boxwood, and last but not least Jesse Pryles, an Australian lass who now lives in Austin and describes herself as a Professional Hardcore Carnivore! Ahhh… my kinda of gal!

So, come on by Jeff’s Backyard and let us inspire you with your backyard cooking desires. Oh, and one more thing…turn to page XX in this issue of Welcome Home to find our ad and a coupon for a free refill of propane in your 20 lb bottle with a $10 or more purchase, an $18 value! From our yard to yours, Jeff’s Backyard!

For more information, call us at 210-342-4760, or email us at jeffsbackyard@att.net. Better yet, come visit us at 435 West Nakoma, San Antonio, TX 78216.